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How To Get Rid of Acne Scars

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A young girl with acne on her cheek looking into a mirror as she squeezes a pimple on her cheek.

Acne—it’s not just a temporary skin intruder that can wreak havoc on your face in its red, inflamed form. Sometimes, it leaves behind a reminder in the form of acne scars, a long-lasting blemish on your skin.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. It’s possible to reduce the appearance of acne scars with modern treatments, such as intense pulsed light (IPL) therapy and radiofrequency (RF) treatment.

These treatments have been making waves in the field of aesthetics, and they can help restore and support your skin’s natural beauty, one pulse at a time.

What Causes Acne Scars?

Before we zoom in on advanced treatments, it’s important to understand what acne scars are and why they persist beyond the life of a pimple. 

Acne is a common skin condition that refers to a range of skin blemishes, collectively called pimples, such as:

  • Blackheads
  • Whiteheads
  • Papules
  • Pustules
  • Nodules
  • Cystic acne

These blemishes can leave marks on the skin after healing. The visibility and size of those marks can depend on the individual blemish.

What Causes Acne?

Acne occurs when hair follicles are clogged with oil and dead skin cells. The condition often presents itself during puberty and can have many contributing factors, including hormonal changes, genetics, and certain medications.

Some factors that can worsen acne, though not cause it directly, include:

  • Diet
  • Stress
  • Tight clothing
  • Pollution
  • High humidity
  • Picking at acne
  • Excessive scrubbing

Types of Acne Scars

Acne scars come in different forms, such as:

  • Atrophic scars: These are pitted scars that occur when the skin is unable to regenerate tissue efficiently after a bout of inflammation. These include ice pick scars, boxcar scars, and rolling scars. 
  • Hypertrophic and keloid scars: These are raised, firm scars that form when the body produces too much collagen as acne wounds heal, resulting in a mass of raised tissue.

Different types of acne scars require different treatments, and some are easier to get rid of than others. A medical professional can help you determine the right treatment options for your skin.

IPL Therapy for Acne Scars

IPL, short for intense pulsed light therapy, uses bursts of high-intensity light to help improve skin texture and reduce the appearance of major skin blemishes like uneven pigmentation, age spots, and acne scars.

Despite using light, IPL treatment is not the same as laser therapy. The handheld device emits a larger light spectrum. Localized cells absorb the light energy, which is then converted to heat before it helps break down unwanted blemishes. In the case of acne scar treatment, this shocks the skin into producing new cells, reducing the appearance of scarring over time.

Benefits of IPL for Acne Scars

With only a 20-minute session, IPL can be an effective and safe alternative to many other acne scar treatments, offering many benefits, including:

  • Reduced discoloration: IPL can effectively correct red and brown acne scars by breaking down the pigments causing the discoloration.
  • Stimulation of collagen production: The heat from IPL helps revitalize the skin and promote the growth of collagen, which is crucial for skin repair and renewal.
  • Noninvasive treatment: IPL doesn’t puncture the skin or further traumatize the skin, which helps make recovery periods quick.

RF Treatment for Acne Scars

RF therapy is a type of aesthetic technique that uses energy waves to heat tissue and stimulate sub-dermal collagen production. It can help reduce the appearance of fine lines, tighten loose skin, and reduce the appearance of acne scars. 

For acne scars, RF is frequently combined with microneedling, such as in Morpheus 8, where tiny needles create minuscule punctures in the skin, and the RF energy is then delivered to deeper layers. It’s popular for skin rejuvenation, but some studies indicate it can moderately improve acne scars.

The Benefits of RF for Acne Scars

RF therapy with microneedling is minimally invasive, along the same lines as chemical peels and dermabrasion. It offers significant benefits, such as:

  • Improved skin texture: RF treatments can improve the texture of acne-scarred skin by smoothing out the surface through new collagen growth.
  • Even skin tones: By reducing the depth of scars and the contrast between the pitted skin and the surrounding area, RF treatments can lead to a more even skin tone.
  • Minimal downtime: Some people experience mild redness after the treatment, but you can typically go home and resume normal activities right away.

Post-Treatment Care & Maintenance

After IPL or RF treatment, you will be given specific instructions for aftercare to protect your treated skin. This will include avoiding sun exposure, using gentle skincare products, and keeping your skin moisturized.

Remember, results aren’t immediate. Consistency to the treatment schedule and post-treatment skin care and recommendations are crucial for achieving results and noticing substantial changes in the texture and tone of your skin.

A woman in an optometry office shaking hands with her optometrist.

Discover Your Skin’s Inner Glow

IPL and RF treatments can give you hope for reducing the appearance of acne scars. If you’re considering one of these treatments, consult one of our professionals who can assess your skin type and scar severity to recommend the right treatment plan for you. This could be Lumecca IPL, Forma RF, Morpheus 8 RF Microneedling or a combination of different treatments to maximize your results.

For the next step towards revitalizing your skin, Luminance Vision offers personalized solutions and a dedication to helping you live free from acne scars.

Take charge of your skin and Book your appointment today!

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